Huge redwood falls, kills hiker in Muir Woods

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MUIR WOODS NATIONAL MONUMENT PARK, Calif. — A huge redwood tree fell and killed a man visiting Muir Woods National Monument Park in California on Christmas Eve, authorities said Thursday.

Subhradeep Dutta, 28, of Edina, Minnesota, died while walking on a marked dirt trail with two other people in the park north of San Francisco famous for its towering trees, according to the Marin County coroner’s office and a spokesman for the park.

In this photo provided by CBS San Francisco shows a sign showing a trail closed sign at the entrance to the Muir Woods National Monument in Marin County, Calif. Authorities say a Redwood tree fell and fatally struck a man visiting Muir Woods National Monument Park on Christmas Eve, Dec. 24, 2019. (KPIX-TV via AP)

Dutta was pinned by the trunk of the 200-foot-tall (61-meter-tall) tree and died at the scene. The trunk measured more than 4 feet (1 meter) in diameter.

A woman injured by falling debris was taken to the hospital. A man hiking with the group escaped injury.

The tree fell following a series of winter storms over the past two weeks.

“This is a very rare and isolated event that may have occurred due to wet ground from recent winter storms, around the roots of the tree,” park spokesman Charles Strickfaden said in an email.

Almost a million visitors visit the park each year. It remained open Thursday and only the areas affected by debris from the fallen tree were closed to the public.

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